Sunday, July 25, 2010
Cars and Shoe Shopping
What is it about cars? Why do they choose the least convenient times to break down?
I know. I know. I’m assigning human emotions to inanimate objects. Cars can’t think, feel, react. But after nearly ten years and a hundred-and-twenty thousand miles, our SUV is almost a member of the family. A member who’s reached the sunset years and now suffers from aches and pains and occasional breakdowns.
That’s what happened this week. A breakdown. The good news—if there can be any good news about a car that won’t start—is that it went belly-up in my own driveway. The bad news—Did I mention a dead car is never a good thing?—is that it’s the week before the Romance Writers of America (RWA) conference, and there were a couple of serious shoe shopping excursions on the agenda. I may not be a foot model but, as far as I’m concerned, the real purpose of a conference is to give me an excuse for buying new shoes. So, there I was, debit card in one hand, shoe list in the other…and no way to get to the store.
Now, I’ve heard that some cars will do anything to keep a mechanic from tinkering with their insides. And I guess, mine is one of those. Because the SUV which wouldn’t start for me, dear hubby, the neighbor, or the guys who came with the tow rig, purred like a kitten once it arrived at the repair shop. And for two days, while the mechanic scratched his head, it kept purring.
Which caused dear hubby to deem the car “unreliable.” Which means I can’t drive it the sixty miles to Orlando for the RWA conference. Or, equally important, take it shoe shopping. Which, in my mind, means we need a new car since I believe they should be reliable without requiring monthly trips to the repair shop.
Dear hubby, however, did not see the breakdown as an excuse to go car shopping. Instead, he decided to drive me (in his car, the reliable one) to conference a day ahead of schedule. So, yesterday, we embarked on a marathon errand running, shoe shopping extravaganza which was absolutely necessary in order to compress all the stuff I would have done last week (if the car hadn’t broken down) and the stuff I had planned to do this weekend, into one day.
One. Very. Long. Day.
The end result? Six pairs of shoes and a change of heart on the new car thing.
The ideal vehicle would tow our boat, occasionally seat seven, and not be too thirsty at the gas pump. In other words, fit my life like the perfect pair of shoes. Any suggestions?